By Sarp Ozer
MOGADISHU, Somalia (AA) – Turkey’s Defense Minister Hulusi Akar on Thursday met Somali officials in the capital Mogadishu for bilateral and military talks.
Akar and his delegation was received by Somalia’s Deputy Prime Minister Mahdi Mohamed Guled, some senior government officials and Turkey’s Ambassador to Somalia Olgan Bekar at Adan Adde International Airport in Mogadishu.
Later, he held talks with Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire and the Chief Commander of the Somali National Army Gen. Dahir Adan Elmi, and chaired a meeting between delegations.
Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed also received the Turkish delegation at the presidential palace.
The officials discussed bilateral defense and military cooperation as well as regional issues, according to Turkish defense sources.
Akar and his delegation later visited the Turkish Embassy in Mogadishu.
“Turkey is an important supporter of the regional and global peace and stability. We always stand by the Somali people with which we have strong historical bonds.
“Turkey has mobilized it historical, social, political and cultural experience for its Somali brothers,” Akar wrote in a message on the embassy notebook.
Turkish defense minister said Turkey will continue to support Somalia.
Turkey has been the biggest supporter of Somalia for years and has its biggest embassy in Africa in Mogadishu. Turkey also runs the only modern military training facility in Somalia which trains Somali armed forces.